Boxing, Asian Games: Nikhat Zareen, Shiva Thapa headline squad; Nitu Ghanghas, Amit Panghal miss outJuly 2, 2023
World Championships bronze medalists Deepak Bhoria (51 kg) and Nishant Dev (71 kg) were named in the Indian men’s boxing squad for this year’s Asian Games in Hangzhou on Saturday.
Nikhat Zareen (51kg) and Lovlina Borgohain (75kg) had already secured their berths in the women’s boxing squad, courtesy their gold medals in the IBA Women’s World Boxing Championships 2023.
They will be joined by the 2022 Worlds bronze medalist Parveen Hooda (57kg) and Commonwealth Games 2022 bronze medalist Jaismine Lamboria (60kg). Additionally, Arundhati Chaudhary (66kg) and Preeti Pawar (54kg ) will also feature in the squad.
However, the biggest misses remain reigning Asian Games light flyweight champion and 2019 World Championship silver medallist Amit Panghal and reigning 48kg women’s world champion Nitu Ghanghas.
Panghal was pipped by Bhoria in his weight category in accordance with Boxing Federation of India’s new selection policy. Meanwhile, Ghanghas, who had jumped weight classes from 48kg to 54kg, was pipped by Pawar.
Although results have not been going his way in recent tournaments, the experienced Shiva Thapa will feature in the super lightweight category (63.5kg). Sachin Siwach has stepped up from 54kg to 57kg as World bronze medalist Mohammad Hussamuddin is recovering from a knee injury sustained during the championship’s quarter-final.
Sachin (57kg) is the 2021 World Youth Champion and Lakshya Chahar (80kg) who is a three-time national champion will be the other pugilists donning the Indian jersey at the prestigious tournament.
Former Asian champion Sanjeet (92kg), Lakshya Chahar (80kg) and Narender Berwal (+92kg) also feature in the men’s squad.
“This formidable squad has worked tirelessly to prepare for this prestigious event and I have no doubt that they will make our country proud. India has been making waves in the boxing landscape and has established its place amongst the elite. Having witnessed exceptional performances by our boxers at the recent World Championships, we are confident that we will be seeing more of the same in Hangzhou. Everyone at BFI wishes each and every member of the team all the best,” said Ajay Singh, President of the Boxing Federation of India.
The Asian Games will also serve as a qualifier for the 2024 Paris Olympics.
Women: Nikhat Zareen (51kg), Preeti Pawar (54kg), Parveen Hooda (57kg), Jaismine Lamboria (60kg), Arundhati Chaudhary (66kg), Lovlina Borgohain (75kg).
Men: Deepak Bhoria (51kg), Sachin Siwach (57kg), Shiva Thapa (63.5kg), Nishant Dev (71kg), Lakshya Chahar (80kg), Sanjeet 92kg, Narender Berwal (+92kg).